‘The Other Son’ makes the political personal
Wed, Nov 28, 2012 (3:57 p.m.)
Having an Israeli and a Palestinian separated at birth is not exactly the most subtle way to dramatize the conflict between the two groups, but French filmmaker Lorraine Levy mostly pulls it off in The Other Son.There are definitely heavy-handed moments in the story of Israeli Joseph (Jules Sitruk) and Palestinian Yacine (Mehdi Dehbi), two teenagers who discover they were accidentally swapped as infants, but Levy deftly handles the more personal side of the story—the difficulty of two families discovering that their sons and brothers are not quite the people they thought they knew and yet are still fundamentally the same.
At times, certain supporting characters come off as mouthpieces for political points of view, but Levy isn’t making a polemic, and her ultimate message is positive and humane. If it’s a little simplistic as well, at least it’s in service of bringing an optimistic perspective to an often bleak subject.